These are a few food prep tips, I wish I had known sooner. Before we begin I want to take a brief moment to thank the lovely folks over at Squarespace for sponsoring this episode and thereby supporting the channel. I’m gonna speak a little bit more about them at the end. Now we’ve all had to start somewhere when it comes to cooking, and over the years I’ve learned a thing or two that has helped me to cut corners, or that’s just generally helped to make meal times more enjoyable. So in this video, I’m gonna share with you seven basic cooking tips or hacks. Things that have just generally helped me out. I hope that they can do that same for you. So this is perfect for anyone who just feels lost in the kitchen or feels like it’s new territory. Some other tips you might be familiar with, but some of them might be entirely new. We’re not gonna know until we take a look. So let’s dive in. Okay, garlic can be a pain to peel. You know the feeling. There’s always that little piece stuck on to it and you feel like you have to scrape it off with a knife or with your nails. And now there’s many hacks on how to get it over with more quickly, but I’m gonna give you a new trick that I’ve just learned recently and by mistake. So you’re gonna cut off just the bottom of the garlic, and then put the garlic into a container in the fridge. The cold environment and the little bit of moisture that’s gonna build up over the next few days makes it a breeze to peel for whenever you need it. Often with the skin coming off all in one piece. The garlic will usually last about two weeks when it’s kept in the fridge, in this way. I love ginger. It helps to fight inflammation, boosts immunity, provides digestive support, but I especially like it for the little kick it gives my smoothies, which is one of my favorite ways to enjoy it. But ginger can be difficult to peel with all those nooks and crannies and cutting it with a knife tends to cut away more flesh than necessary, so here’s a little tip a friend of mine taught me recently. Instead of using a knife, use a spoon to peel the ginger. Less is wasted this way because it removes only the skin, and it’s easier to get into those little crevices. But wait, there’s part two to this tip. If you need to grate your ginger you can try using the tip of a fork instead of a grater. All you’ve got to do is hold down the fork firmly with one hand and grate the ginger with the other. Simply moving it side to side and up and down, and voila, it’s now ready to add to salad dressings, curries, stir fries and soups. We stayed at an Airbnb in Greece once, in hopes that we would be able to make our own meals only to find that the knives were useless because they were so dull, and this is when I learned the following hack. If you have no access to a knife sharpener, kitchen knives can be sharpened using the bottom of a ceramic mug. And, of course, please be careful when doing this. Then give it a rinse and cut your veggies. You’ll see it’ll cut through everything like butter. It’s been one of my favorite kitchen tips to have learned thus far. The following tip is one I wish I had learned sooner. So instead of working hard at removing a pit from an avocado, using your hands or a spoon, which is something I always used to do, we’re gonna try again, but using a knife this time. So, very cautiously tap the seed with the edge of a knife, give it a twist and pop! The seed comes right out. How easy was that? I posted an Instagram photo recently about kale, asking if you guys liked it, and so many of you said that you did, but not if eaten raw because you felt it was too tough and bitter. Now, I felt the exact same way and my first rookie mistake was not removing the stems. The stems on kale, unlike other leafy greens, are much too tough to be enjoyable, but the second tip is one I admit I only started using myself a few months ago, and now I seriously appreciate raw kale so much more. Here’s the quick tip. Massage it. Apparently we aren’t the only ones who enjoy a massage every now and then. This little tip helps to break down the cell walls and makes the kale more soft, and even less bitter, in my opinion. For the 2 to 3 minutes you’re gonna be massaging the kale you’ll see it reduce in volume and it’s going to become a deeper green before your very eyes. After you’re done massaging, you can add the dressing and the desired toppings. For this epic kale salad, check out the recipe link in the description box below. I love button and cremini mushrooms, but when I first started cooking with them, I couldn’t for the life of me, figure out why all my meals were coming out too mushy or liquidy. Here’s the thing: mushrooms release loads of moisture when being cooked, so what I like to do now is sauté my onions and garlic first, and then add my mushrooms, and cook or sauté this for another eight minutes or so, until all the moisture has evaporated and the volume has reduced significantly In size. At this stage, it’s ready to be made into stir fry’s, curries or mushroom risottos without imparting more liquid than you intended. If I’m ever cutting two or more onions, I honestly just don’t feel like crying. So what I’ll do is I’ll just peel it. I put it in a food processor, give it a blitz and let that cut it up for me. So that’s tip number one. But the second tip is about oil. You see, there’s this common perception out there that if you don’t use enough oil, your onion’s gonna stick to the bottom of a pan and won’t caramelise. Personally, I prefer using less added oil and would rather get more of my fats from whole food sources when possible. So how do you go about caramelising the onions without needing so much oil? The answer is simply water. So we’re gonna start off with just a little bit of oil first, to get it started, and then every two minutes or so, you can add a splash of water to deglaze the pan, repeating this as often as needed, until the onions are cooked to your liking. I sometimes even batch cook my onions to store in the fridge to speed up meal prep time throughout the week. All right. So what do you think? Are any of these tips new to you? Are you gonna try any of them out? Are you already using some of them? Do you have any hacks of your own to share? If so, let us know in the comments section below. If you enjoyed this video, I welcome you to hit that like button, and you can definitely expect to see more kind of cooking hacks like this in the future. There are just too many to be shared. I again wanted to take a moment to thank Squarespace for sponsoring this video. I love what these guys are doing because they’re helping visionaries and content creators, entrepreneurs, artists, whoever to create a space for themselves online. It’s an all-in-one platform where you can use their designer, award-winning templates to create your own website or blog or online store. And in a sense, everything is taken care of for you, because there’s nothing you need to install or patch or upgrade, and they offer 24/7 customer service,which in my opinion is one of the biggest perks, because no one likes to be left hanging, right? So, if you want to give it a try, absolutely for free, visit squarespace.com/pickuplimes. And if you enjoy It, you can also get 10% off your first purchase by seeing that link in the description box below. All right, I’m gonna let you guys go, so you can enjoy trying out some of these new hacks in the kitchen. Thanks a lot for watching. Pick Up Limes signing off. We’ll see you next week.